Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Good news: Congress won’t intervene in DC’s gay marriage bill

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From Edward Epstein in Congressional Quarterly:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Wednesday that Congress won’t try to block a District of Columbia City Council vote to recognize the validity of same-sex marriages performed elsewhere in the country.

The council voted 12-1 for the measure on Tuesday, and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty has said he will sign it. A handful of states are allowing same-sex marriages, including Maine, where Democratic Gov. John Baldacci signed such a bill into law Wednesday. At the same time, many other states have moved to block such marriages.

Under the District of Columbia charter, Congress can block any action of the City Council and mayor within 30 days. Some conservative House Republicans said they want the House to take such a step in the case of the same-sex marriage measure.

But at a press conference, Pelosi, a Californian whose state Supreme Court is considering a case aimed at overturning a voter-passed initiative banning same-sex marriage, said the House won’t hold such a vote.

“I don’t think the Congress should intervene there in terms of their recognition of marriages in the states that allow them,” she said.

But Pelosi also said she won’t press Congress to repeal the section of the 1996 federal law (PL 104-199) known as the Defense of Marriage Act that bans gay marriage.

She said the House is moving on issues involving the rights of gays and lesbians, pointing to last week’s passage of a bill (HR 1913) that would expand hate crimes law to include sexual orientation. And she said Congress may eventually look at the Defense Department’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that bans homosexuals from openly serving in the military. But she said same-sex marriage isn’t on the agenda, because she doesn’t think Congress would approve legislation legalizing it…

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

6 May 2009 at 11:34 am

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